Indian and Australia on Tuesday pressed Israel on the need to observe international law in Gaza, which has been witnessing relentless air and ground attacks since Oct. 7.
“This is the humanitarian crisis that we see in Gaza today. The need for humanitarian assistance, which is very urgent and the observance of international humanitarian law there,” said Indian Foreign Minister S. Jaishankar.
His Australian counterpart Penny Wong described the situation in Gaza as “dire” and said human suffering is widespread, urging Israel to follow international law in the besieged Palestinian enclave.
Jointly addressing the media in New Delhi after holding talks, the two foreign ministers also criticized the Hamas attack of Oct. 7, calling it a “terrorist act.”
The two allies are part of the Quad, a loose security alliance with Japan and the US, with which New Delhi began joint special forces exercise on Tuesday in the northeastern state of Meghalaya.
‘We need a political solution’
Jaishankar and Wong agreed that the end to the Palestine-Israeli conflict is a two-state solution – the traditional stand of the two allies.
On the future of the Palestinians, Jaishankar said: “A solution in our view and in the view of many countries in the world can only come from a two-state solution.”
Wong added: “We do need a political solution. We do need get to the point where we see both Israel and Palestinian people living in peace and security behind the international borders and that progress to a two-state solution is required.”
On illegal settlements in occupied Palestinian territories, she said: “I can be very clear that Australia has under this government expressed its view that settlements are contrary to international law and unhelpful to progress towards a two-state solution.”
“On the humanitarian crises, we have taken a very clear view which we have articulated publicly, about the importance of international law, the need for Israel to observe in its actions international law, including the protection of civilians,” she asserted.
Israel has launched relentless air and ground attacks in the Gaza Strip following an attack by Hamas, killing more than 14,100 Palestinians, including 5,840 children and 3,920 women, according to health authorities in the enclave.
Thousands of buildings, including hospitals, mosques, and churches, have been damaged or destroyed in Israel’s air and ground attacks on the besieged enclave.
The Israeli death toll, meanwhile, is around 1,200, according to official figures.
Source : Anadolu Agency